What Sims packs should you buy?
Expansion packs for The Sims are really expensive, they're like, 40 dollars each. So if you're gonna buy one, it's kind of an investment and you don't want to waste your money and like, buy the "wrong one." I don't really think that any of the expansion packs are bad necessarily, but I do certainly think that some are more worth the money than others. I get asked all the time what expansion packs are best and which ones people should buy and so I thought that today I might make a video kind of walking you through which packs I like the most and why.
Just to kind of give you some insight on which ones I think are most worth the money. Now obviously my thoughts on these packs might be the complete opposite from yours. For example, I don't really love Get Famous, but you might be like, super into that pack and love the idea of fame in The Sims. So I'm gonna rank that one pretty low and you might think that's your favorite pack and that's totally fine.
Obviously these things are kind of weird and we all play the game super differently so we're all gonna have like, very different favorites. Back when I was a kid and like, super into The Sims 3, I used to read Carl's Sims 3 guide like, all the time. I would read like, every little ounce of information on every single pack and like, compare them all just trying to pick which one I wanted to get because I could only get one. I decided on Pets by the way, and I stand by that choice.
Long story short, I very much relate to this like, difficulty in choosing packs so I wanted to rank them with you. I made this tier list, I will say, I got these pictures off The Sims official website and I don't really understand why just a few of them have a different color background. It's kind of upsetting me, but I'm just gonna try to ignore it. And we're gonna rank these into five categories: necessary, very good, pretty good, just fine, and not for me. Like I said, I don't really think that any of these packs are like, bad, necessarily, but some of them, the earlier ones like Get to Work, honestly have a lot less stuff in them than the more recent packs do.
So comparatively it might not be as worth the money as the newer packs, but also a couple of these just don't really interest me that much so I probably wouldn't buy them if I weren't a YouTuber. Honestly we can start with Get to Work because it was first. This is the thing about this pack, right? It's not bad, it actually has a lot of cool things: it's got three active careers, you can be a detective, a scientist, or a doctor.
And you can actually like, go to work and be those things and like, do surgery and stuff. It's also got a super cool retail system so you can run your own store and your own business. They added aliens into this pack so we got a new occult type. There's a bunch of kind of nice clothes and a bunch of nice build items for the retail stores and stuff, but if I'm being completely honest, I don't really use any of this build stuff in my like, everyday, regular builds, it's more for like, specific community lots and stuff.
I also don't really play with occult Sims that much, so aliens aren't a huge selling point for me. And while I love the active careers, I kind of wish there was more to it. If they were going to go back and do another pack refresh, I would love to see them refresh Get to Work. I mean we got a new world, but it's only got four lots.
I think they're kind of trying to imply that like, the science lab is maybe in the outskirts of Oasis Springs, and maybe this world is like, a separate extension of Willow Creek, so it's like, a shopping district in the base game world. It's just kind of separate on its own. And I'll give them some grace in that this was the first expansion pack and they hadn't really gotten their footing yet I guess with the worldbuilding, but if you compare this to like, Windenburg, the world that came in the next pack, you just can't really. Like, even this island is bigger than Magnolia Promenade. And so for that reason I put Get to Work at just fine because it's fun, it's got some cool stuff, but there is definitely way better packs out there. And speaking of Get Together, I rank that pack very highly. I'm gonna put it at very good.
The world obviously being like, one of the biggest selling points, this is like, the biggest world in the entire game. We have not gotten anything like this since. I also really love this Tudor build style, I think it's one of my favorite build styles just like, of all time in general so this pack really appeals to me for that reason. The gameplay from this one is kind of weird, it's not as like, directly appealing as like, a doctor career, but I actually use this pack like, almost every time I play because they added that new club system. I think they made it with like, the intention of it being like, a chess club and stuff like that which I don't really do.
Instead I use the clubs for like, a way to meet people. So I'll make like, a kids club and I'll add all of the kids in the world into a club so that my Sims kids can have friends. Or maybe like, a club of single adults so my sim can find people to date, almost like a replacement for online dating because we don't have that yet. Maybe I'll make a family club and put the cousins in it so I can more easily invite over the extended family. It's really good for like, social groups and socializing and not so much like, clubs, as they intended, but I actually use it all the time and I find it really, really good for that purpose. This pack is like, honestly one of my all-time favorites, so again, I rank it really highly.
After Get Together we got City Living, and I will say, I've got sort of a special place in my heart for this pack because this was the first pack that I ever got invited to a real life Sims event for. They flew like, 15 of us to California to visit their studios and play this pack early. I was like, 17, I was still in high school, I had like, 40,000 subscribers, and it was like, the greatest moment of my entire life, as you can probably imagine. So I personally kind of like this pack, but I acknowledge that I'm a little bit biased there. This one's really cool though because we got cities for the first time. Looking back on this, I do kind of wish that we got like, more apartments and more apartment customization, but I still think that this world is like, kind of unmatched.
There's also a lot of lots if you count like, all of the separate apartments, there's a lot of places to live here. The gameplay is pretty cool too, we have some like, semi-active careers, one of them's social media, there's like, a politician career, there's festivals that happen in each town, we got these karaoke bars and a singing skill. You can live in like, a penthouse or like, a tiny, needs TLC apartment that's got like, gas leaks and rats in it.
I honestly really love this pack, I rank it really highly, I'm gonna put it all the way up at necessary. We don't really have anything else like it and it adds so much to the game. It's like, completely different from all of the other worlds and like, most of the other gameplay so it's really fun to have. My personal bias aside, I honestly think it's a really good pack.
Then we got Cats and Dogs which is also like, a complete game changer. Obviously it comes with pets, so we could have cats and dogs for the first time. All of the clothing is really good, the build stuff is kind of this like, Cape Cod style, it is beautiful. There is like, a ridiculous amount of customization for the pets, you can like, paint on them. We also got a new active vet career so you can like, build a vet's office and run the whole thing yourself. It kind of uses that a retail system a bit from Get to Work, but like, completely expands on it so you can like, hire employees, but you can also like, actively treat animals.
I think Brindleton Bay is also maybe my second favorite world out of all of them. It's not quite as big as the last two, but it's really beautiful and I love this build style. It also has the first ever official canon gay couple in the entire Sims franchise, Brent and Brant Hecking, and that's really cool. The game has obviously changed a lot since then because we have way more representation in like, the newer worlds than we did before, but it was kind of a big deal at the time.
But also the actual pets gameplay, like cats and dogs is such a game changer. I have pretty much every single one of my Sims have a pet, I like, very rarely play without pets, so for that reason I'm gonna put it all the way up at necessary as well. I honestly can't imagine The Sims without this pack, I play in this world so often, I always have pets, it's really, really good.
Up next we have Seasons and I'm gonna say it right now, this is my favorite pack out of all of them for the entire Sims 4. This I think is the best pack. I'm gonna go right in and put it at like, the very top of necessary. In my opinion, this is like, the pack. If you're gonna buy just one pack for The Sims 4, I would buy this one. All of the clothing and furniture is really nice, it's kind of got like, a Craftsman build style which I love.
This one doesn't actually come with a new world which is kind of a downside, so there aren't any new lots to play in, but I feel like because it adds weather and seasons, it completely changes every other world in the entire game. Like, having it snow or rain sometimes and having it be winter and there's like, snow covering everything completely changes every aspect of the game. I honestly cannot imagine playing without Seasons now. It also adds this calendar feature and holidays so you can like, make custom holidays in your game. They added like, a little scouts club for the kids, there's a gardening career and a flower arranging skill, this has like, really cute gameplay. And I cannot emphasize enough how much of a difference it makes in your game to have weather and to have Seasons.
It makes everything more lifelike. This pack really completely changes like, everything, it is so cool. When it first came out, I cried when I saw all of the worlds in the snow, which is kind of embarrassing, but I'm just being honest, I really love this pack. And then after that, we have Get Famous, which I don't really love as much.
I will say, I love the idea of this pack and the active acting career is actually really, really fun. It's got a really cool fame system and this whole like, tier thing to it. The CAS is all pretty cool, I don't love the build items as much, it's got a weird collection of like, set stuff for the acting career and then like, a bunch of really gaudy like, gold stuff for the mansions, and then we also got a little bit of like, mid-century things, and I love the mid-century things, but a lot of this stuff kind of ruins it for me. I also really just cannot deal with this world. Honestly, I hate this world I think. That's kind of strong language, but like, it's kind of small, it's just got three neighborhoods.
And then this one is kind of fake and I think it's supposed to be where that active lot from the career is. The lots back here have potential, but they're like, too big for it to fit into the world, the mansions are like, genuinely actually really ugly and this one has no toilets, I am not joking, there is not a single toilet in there. They built bathrooms and like, left places for toilets and then just didn't place a toilet. I truly don't know how they managed that, but there just aren't toilets.
This lot, this museum, is the ugliest thing I have ever seen in my entire life. I can't look at it. I actually can't believe this is a real thing that exists in The Sims, this I find so upsetting in so many ways.
I really, really want to like this pack, but the world just takes me out of it so much. I can't recommend this pack because of the world. I'm gonna put it all the way at the bottom at not for me, this is like, probably my least favorite expansion pack. And that's not to say there aren't cool things in it, it does have some cool stuff that it came with.
Actually one of my favorite items in the entire game is this pond. You can fill this with sharks and your Sims can die in it, I'm not kidding. This is like, honestly one of my favorite parts of the entire Sims 4, but just like, in comparison to the other packs, I feel like I can't recommend this.
There's just so many better things in this game. Kind of along those same lines, we have Island Living. This one was honestly kind of disappointing for me, I feel like it has a lot of wasted potential. I don't think it's necessarily bad, I just feel like it could have been so much better and it's just not. This one came with mermaids and I was really excited about the thought of that, but compared to the other occult types, they're just not as good. Like, when you look at spellcasters or vampires and werewolves now, they have this super cool like, tier system where you can level up and unlock abilities.
The mermaids just don't have that, they're just like, fish people that dry out when they're not in the water enough. They've got a couple cool things they can do, but they're just not as good as the other occults which is kind of disappointing. I also kind of feel like they weren't super sure what direction they were going with this pack. They tried to do a little bit of like, oh, pick up the trash and clean up the island, but it doesn't actually really have that much gameplay consequence, it's kind of just like, a thing that you can do. And then it like, slowly beautifies one of the islands. I will say, the world is like, truly amazing, it is so beautiful.
I'm also really impressed by like, how open it feels despite it not being an open world. Like, you can swim in all of this area, you can swim like, all out here, you can swim all around here. There's really a lot of open space your sim can go, which I didn't really expect to see just because of how The Sims 4 is. You can also build on stilts over the water which is a really, really cool feature. I feel like it's just kind of lacking a lot of the things we were expecting from this pack though.
A lot of people wanted to have like, a resort type of vibe, we wanted to see like, boats and stuff, things that we got from Island Paradise in The Sims 3, but this one instead is like, more of a small town Island vibe, like helping the neighbors kind of vibe, and I do like that about it. I think I'm just bitter about still wanting hotels in The Sims 4. But I don't know, I guess there's just not really a clear like, gameplay arc from this pack compared to the other ones. It's mostly just like, ocean, you know? That's kind of just the whole big thing. Despite my criticisms, I still think it's like, pretty good. We also really don't have like,
anything like that, so it's kind of a fun addition. Honestly just being able to like, go to the beach is pretty cool, and I do like the pack a lot, I just wish it was better. I feel like it has potential to be like, really, really good, and it just kind of isn't. After that we got Discover University and I have some complaints about this pack, but I really thought it was like, so fun. First of all, at the time this Create a Sim stuff was like, groundbreaking, it was like the best CAS we ever got, it was really, really good. I think we've gotten some better stuff now, they've started like, making more trendy clothes, but this stuff I think still really holds up as being really cute.
The build selection is kind of odd, they sort of gave us like, two opposing build styles. We have some like, really old fancy windows for this like, older building college campus, and then we also got some more like, modern stuff for the like, newer college campus because there's two. And then furniture-wise, we have a lot of like, Ikea seeming dorm room furniture and then also like, a couple random really fancy pieces. I feel like The Sims really struggles when they try to achieve more than one build style in a pack. It really is always like, their worst packs for build mode when they try and do this because they can't like, fully flesh out just one thing.
They give us like, a taste of something and then a taste of something else, and then it's just not as good and you can't really build as many things out of it. It is really cool, it just probably wouldn't be like, my first pick for builders. Compared to things like, Seasons or Get Together especially, it just has less. Gameplay wise though, this pack is incredible. It kind of has this college town,
but there's two rival universities here and you can go to either one. One of them focuses like, more on sciences and then one more on like, arts and history and stuff. And then when your sim applies, they'll get into like, the better school based on their skills, it's just kind of cool. It's also kind of difficult to succeed in college, you have to like, really try in your classes, and I like when The Sims is kind of a challenge, I think it's more fun that way.
You can also choose to live on campus or off campus and there's like, kind of a few options. You can be in a house with roommates, you can be in a dorm with roommates, the roommates are kind of fun too, they'll like, cause problems, they'll be loud, they'll invite people over, but they'll also like, make food or like, clean, and it's kind of exciting. I really like University, I have a lot of fun playing with it, I think I'm gonna rank it pretty high at like, very good. Then we got Eco Lifestyle and this one feels like they kind of tried to flesh out that like, trash picking up idea from Island Living a little bit more, but like, way better, this one makes way more sense. It has a lot of pretty cute CAS, the build is kind of fun, we got a lot of like, sort of more modern windows and things with this pack. This one also has some of my favorite gameplay features out of all of the packs ever, for example, this dumpster and dumpster diving is so much fun.
Your sim can like, dig in this and like, pull out a fancy toilet and bring it home with them. It also has some off the grid gameplay where you can use solar panels and water collectors and have your sim like, live off the power grid and generate their own power. We also got a lot of crafty stuff, there's like, a candle making station so you can make your own candles, and this like, fabrication station so you can fabricate new furniture.
I think they kind of made a mistake with that fabricating thing though because some of the best furniture in the entire pack can only be made from that. So if you don't play with that gameplay, you would never know about that like, super great couch, or super great bed. It almost seems like a waste to have made these like, really nice items, and then have them locked behind gameplay because if you don't know, you just never realize that it's there. But that's not really a terrible thing because it is still there, there is still great furniture, right? And even beyond that, there's still a ton of really nice furniture. The world is kind of weird because a lot of the gameplay revolves around like, changing the world.
So over here for example in Port Promise, you can see it's like, really smoggy, it's got like, visual effects. And then as you play the game, you can try and like, update that area to have like, less of an industrial effect and more of a green neighborhood effect, and then you can try and make it like this area that's kind of sparkling. This part of the game doesn't really matter to me that much, it feels like it's almost too easy, but it also came with these neighborhood action plans which are kind of like an HOA almost. Which doesn't sound good, but basically your sim can vote for like, rules of the community. One of them is called we wear bags and then if you vote for that, all of the Sims will always have bags on their head. There's also some more useful ones for gameplay like, to make the neighborhood more green or to make Sims more interested in art and stuff.
And some kind of bad ones, there's one where Sims can just come steal all your stuff, so you have to be careful to not just let them vote for that against your will because that would not be good. These community lots can also be voted for and like, changed into different things. So it could be like, a default community space, or it could be like, an arts area, there's like, a few variations and that's pretty fun.
I honestly like Eco Lifestyle a lot more than I thought I would and I feel like when I played it for the first time, it was one of my favorite experiences like, ever playing The Sims. I think I'd rank it pretty highly, like at pretty good or very good, almost like, at the bottom of very good and the top of pretty good. I acknowledge this one is like, maybe a little bit controversial, it might not appeal to everybody, but for me, like the off the grid gameplay and the dumpsters especially is really, really fun. I might actually put it up to very good, I like this pack.
No, pretty good. Oh, I don't know. Next we have Snowy Escape and I have to acknowledge some personal bias here as well. They actually invited me to help build some of the lots that are officially in the game so I'm kind of a giant fan of this world, I think understandably.
This pack was really different from anything we had ever gotten and kind of unexpected. It's set in the mountains in a Japanese-inspired world and all of the gameplay is like, snowboarding and skiing and hiking and mountain climbing. This pack honestly has some of my favorite CAS out of the entire game and it's got some really, really beautiful build items. The world that came with this one, like I mentioned, is really, really cool.
Up here at the top of the mountain it's always snowy, and it will actually still snow up there even if you don't have Seasons. You won't have Seasons everywhere else in the rest of the world, but up here there's always snow, Seasons or not, because that's where the mountains and the skiing and stuff is. And you can't really ski if there's not snow so they gave it to us. You can also climb to the top of the mountain, there's like, a whole gameplay thing involved and your sim can die in the process. There's also a new vending machine death from this pack, your Sims can get squished by a vending machine. I'm very easily pleased, when packs have new woohoo spots or new death types, they're like, immediately ranked higher as far as I'm concerned.
The thing is, while there's a lot that I love about this pack and I honestly think it's really, really fun, it just doesn't fit into my everyday gameplay that much. When I look at my other top packs, things like Seasons, I like Seasons because it affects every single aspect of my Sims game. I don't even need to go out of my way to play with it, it just happens to me.
Also like, Cats and Dogs, I play with pets in almost every single household. Honestly Get Together too, I use that club feature every time I play. And then you think about things like Get Famous and Get to Work that I ranked pretty low because I don't use those features that much. I just don't really find myself having most of my Sims be into skiing or snowboarding. The gameplay just isn't really a thing that I use all that often. And honestly it might even be partially because I'm from Florida, I've never been snowboarding, like it's just not a thing that I think about much.
So while I love a lot of parts of this pack, I'm gonna rank it kind of low at like, just fine. Which makes me feel bad because like, I'm listed in the credits of this pack. I built this! This mansion? I made it! The world is so cool, I just don't find myself using the gameplay very much. Okay, after that though we got Cottage Living, and this pack is also one of my all-time favorites.
I don't know what it is, but I love farming. Farm games are like, immediately a win for me. This is why I liked Eco Lifestyle so much because I loved like, trying to live off the grid and then this adds in like, more aspects of farming and I'm immediately sold. With this one and Eco Lifestyle by the way, you could like, really live off the grid, because you can make like, all your own milk, grow all your own food, it's so cool. This pack also has in my opinion the best CAS in the entire game. I am obsessed with this like, cottage vibes that it came with. It's got a lot of super cute like, cottage-y build things too, it's very much like a British countryside-inspired world.
I think Henford-on-Bagley might also be one of my top worlds of all time in this game. It's got this super cute downtown area, there's a few like, countryside parts, there's this giant waterfall. The builds are beautiful, the farming is so fun, it came with like, llamas. It also kind of has a bit of that like, small town vibe I think they were going for with Island Living, but almost executed a little bit better. There's this whole aspect of gameplay where you kind of run errands for the other townies, and Island Living even has a little bit of that too, you can do like, odd jobs in that pack. Honestly Island Living seems to have a lot of really good ideas that just weren't fully executed and they kind of took that and then expanded upon on it in other places.
I really do like Cottage Living though, I think I'd rank it pretty highly. Maybe between very good and pretty good again, but I'm going to put it up at very good. And lastly we have the most recent pack: High School Years. Okay.
So this pack, I feel like also has so much potential, but it's also so buggy. It makes it kind of hard to rank because I love the idea of this active high school thing, like having my Sims go to an active school, playing through a real school day, like, going to prom and having a real graduation, these are all things that are like, a dream come true for me as a person who loves family gameplay. And like I talked about, I love these packs that affect my Sims everyday lives. And I played with so many teen Sims, like this is a huge pack, it like, completely changes everything, kind of like Seasons does. It just like, doesn't work that well though. Like, literally just yesterday it was my Sims prom day.
I got invited to a pre-prom party, I went to that and then it pops up like, prom is starting, do you want to go? I click yes, take me there, and then it just doesn't. I just didn't go to prom because it didn't take me, and if it won't take you, you just can't go. So my sim missed her prom, literally yesterday this happened and the pack's been out for months and it's still having issues like that. And that's like, a new issue, I didn't have that back when the pack first came out. Ugh! So like, I love the CAS, the CAS is like, some of the best in the entire game.
The build is so cool, there's like, so many cool teenage furniture pieces that we really needed. You can be a streamer, like that's what I do, I kind of like that. The world is also really, really cool, I love the idea of this. There's kind of like, a small downtown, the school is up here, and then over here across the river we've got this like, nice fair area. There's also a social media app that's really, really fun and like, one of my favorite parts of the game ever. So while it's buggy and there are some things that I would change, I do really love this pack.
I still love going to high school, I still love going to prom when it works. And I don't really know how to rank it because I love it when it works, when it works, it is so good, but when issues like prom not happening show up, it's really hard to recommend that you buy it. Especially when there's other packs that like, do work. There's a whole other school pack that works. Granted it's university and not
high school which is very different, but I think it's just kind of hard for me to put it high right now because I'm currently so frustrated at how it's functioning. So I'm gonna put it at just fine, but if they just fix the bugs, I'd put it like, all the way up to necessary, I love the idea of this pack. I love most of the pack, it's just so hard to use sometimes, so I'm gonna put it just fine. And that is my tier list of all of The Sims 4 expansion packs.
So if you were wondering like, what pack does Kayla think I should buy? I guess I would recommend Seasons, Cats and Dogs, and City Living the most. Obviously these things might be completely different for you, you might think that Island Living is the single greatest pack of all time and that Seasons sucks. This is just how I feel these packs fit into like, my gameplay style, but we're all different and we all have different interests so these things could totally change for you. I will say that I think that Seasons, Cats and Dogs, and City Living are pretty universally loved. Like, pretty much everybody likes that kind of gameplay.
While things like Cottage Living might not appeal to everybody, not everyone wants to be a pumpkin farmer that like, has chickens. But I have been talking at you long enough about Sims expansion packs so I'm gonna end this video right here. If you like The Sims, I play the game literally every day here on YouTube so feel free to subscribe.
I am also getting very, very close to 700,000 Twitch followers, I'm like, 2,000 awa, and I play The Sims like, every day on Twitch too so I'm gonna link my channel down below in case you want to go follow me there. And last week, I made a video ranking all of the kits so if you want to watch that, I'll link that down below for you too. Thank you for watching, have the best rest of your day, and I'm gonna catch you all tomorrow, okay? Bye everybody. It's interesting because sometimes I kind of surprise myself when I actually sit back and think about the ranking of these packs. I feel like I ranked Eco Lifestyle and High School Years way lower than I thought I would.
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